Apple Licenses Iconic Swiss Clock Design For iPad’s Clock App

Last month, Apple was accused of copying Swiss Federal Railways’ iconic clock design in its newly released Clock app for the iPad as a part of the iOS 6 update, as per a Swiss newspaper Tages-Anzeiger

The clock, designed in 1944, is copyrighted and trademarked by the Swiss Federal Railways, which is why it was planning to take legal action against Apple. 

The Swiss design sense is known to be one of best in the world, with the best testament being Helvetica, a typeface developed by a Swiss designer which is used in all iOS devices. Apple, of course, is known to have an eye for great design, which, coupled with its love for skeuomorphic interfaces, indicated that the  Swiss Federal Railways’ accusations were true.

Here’s a comparison of the iPad Clock app and the Swiss railway clock:


The Verge now reports that according to the press release from the railway service, Apple has signed a license agreement to use the iconic Swiss Clock Design for iPad’s Clock app in iOS 6.

The terms and the tenure of the licensing agreement have not been disclosed.

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  • laurnzo

    So much for innovation.. ha ha ha

    • Jeremy Taco Patterson

      They pulled a Samsung.

      Only, instead of taking it to court and costing themselves a B(illion)IG pile of money, they did the right thing, admitted they had copied the design, and licensed it.

      • iPhone 5

        So they did the right thing by admitting to “copying” only after they were caught?

        • Jeremy Taco Patterson

          It’s a clock face. It’s HARDLY something I would think anybody expected to be so “treasured” by the swiss…

        • swisstrain

          spot on :)

  • Hmmm?

    Don’t understand. Did they not know where they got from or that it was copyrighted? Or was it coincidence that they looked alike?

  • Maxilus

    And now you can hang your iPad on the wall. Haha

  • jin

    “The Swiss Design sense is known to be one the best in the world”? By whom precisely? Design sense is very much a subjective matter. Nice objective reporting there. What are you, Swiss? Way to be ethnocentric, pal.